Skip to content

George taking everything in stride with Attack

Thunder Bay’s Carter George is in his first full season as a netminder with the Ontario Hockey League’s Owen Sound Attack.

OWEN SOUND – The 2023-24 campaign has been the most interesting one to date in Carter George’s hockey career.

The 17-year-old netminder from Thunder Bay made the jump up to the Owen Sound Attack this season after splitting time with the Ontario Hockey League club and the Greater Ontario Junior Hockey League’s St. Marys Lincolns.

Over the last few months, George has helped lead Canada to a gold medal at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup, dealt with a coaching change in Owen Sound, and garnered attention as the top-ranked North American goaltender by National Hockey League central scouting ahead of June’s draft in Las Vegas.

While all of those events might seem like a lot to deal with, George says he’s just looking at what is immediately in front of him.

“I really just focus on the new game and cancel out all the white noise that’s going around me,” he said.

“You can’t really focus on all of that other stuff and what’s happening on social media. If you just put in the work at practice and in the games, everything else will happen for a reason.”

That approach has gone well for him so far in Owen Sound.

After serving as the team’s third-string goalie last year – where he posted a 7-3-0 record with a 2.41 goals against average and a .924 save percentage – George worked his way into the starting role this season.

Heading into a home game with the Guelph Storm on Saturday, George has a 20-17-5-2 record with a 3.12 goals against average, a league-best .913 save percentage and four shutouts, which has him tied with Jackson Parsons of the Kitchener Rangers for the most in the OHL.

“I feel like I’m a lot more efficient this year in the crease and I definitely have some more confidence now that I’m with the team in a full-time role,” George said.

“They are giving me all the opportunity in the world here in Owen Sound and I just have to try and make the most of it.”

George did a lot of work last summer with his goalie coach, Matt Smith, on the finer details of his game -- to get ready for the grind that comes with being in the OHL.

“It was about making things more efficient, especially from the technical aspect, and improving little things such as skating or edge work so that I could be successful at this level,” George said.

“I also knew that I needed to do everything I could to maintain my body over the course of the full season, whether that was through stretching, recovering or working out every day.”

While his season has been highlighted by winning a gold medal for Canada at the Hlinka Gretzky Cup in August and earning an invite to the Canadian Hockey League’s Top Prospects Game, George said the thing that’s stood out the most from that experience is that he’s getting to know more players from across the country.

“During the Hlinka, I really enjoyed making that connection with new guys and gearing up to go against the best of the best,” George said. “You create a bond with those players and they are definitely people you’ll stay in touch with for the rest of your life.

“It was cool to meet some more of those guys at the Top Prospect game, but to also see their talent close up and what they do off the ice with their habits and their tendencies on the ice. There was a lot that I took away from that.”

In the midst of his individual success, George has been riding the wave of an up-and-down campaign for the Attack.

The team made a coaching change after just seven games and has dealt with injuries to key players such as Winnipeg Jets top prospect Colby Barlow.

With a little less than a month to go in the regular season, the 26-24-5-2 Attack sit in fifth place in the OHL’s Western Conference, but a scant nine points separate them from the Storm, Erie Otters, Flint Firebirds and Sarnia Sting in the race for the final four playoff spots.

“We’ve got a full lineup now and we’re really playing some good hockey here,” George said.

“Our goal is to get that fifth seed and have a favourable matchup . . . and I’m doing whatever I can to help us achieve that.

push icon
Be the first to read breaking stories. Enable push notifications on your device. Disable anytime.
No thanks